Wild salmon swim up crystal clear streams into the Tongass National Forest, feeding large populations of wolves, grizzlies, black bears and bald eagles. This wildlife relies on the forest's ancient, 1000-year-old trees to survive.
Unfortunately, in July the U.S. Forest Service announced “Big Thorne,” a plan to log more than 4,600 football fields' worth of ancient Tongass old-growth trees. Taxpayers like you and me will subsidize the destruction to the tune of more than $20 million in the first year alone, and such a massive loss of habitat could drive the Alexander Archipelago wolf closer to the brink of extinction.
We’ve submitted nearly 200,000 public comments demanding the Forest Service transition away from old-growth logging, but it’s clear Congress will need to intervene. Ask your Representative to sign on to a letter being circulated by Representatives Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Peter DeFazio (D-OR) – stop the Big Thorne old-growth timber sale and demand the Forest Service transition to sustainable management practices.
Here's the message we'll deliver to your representative:
I am writing to ask you to join your colleagues and sign on to Representatives Rosa DeLauro and Peter DeFazio’s letter to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack requesting that he halt “Big Thorne” – the largest old-growth timber sale in the Tongass National Forest in a decade – and begin the transition to sustainable management of the forest immediately.
Every year, the U.S. Forest Service pours $23 million in taxpayer subsidies into cutting down old-growth trees just to support the 107 remaining timber jobs in our nation’s only temperate rainforest. This is a terrible misuse of my taxpayer dollars, and Big Thorne will only destroy more ancient trees and waste more of my money. I urge you to tell the Forest Service that it is time to cut the waste and implement a real transition to sustainable management in the Tongass.
Southeast Alaska is the most productive fishery in the world, providing $1 billion to the economy and supporting 7,300 jobs annually. The Tongass’ growing tourism industry attracts more than one million visitors each year and employs an additional 10,000 people. Both industries rely on an intact, healthy forest in order to thrive. Once we cut the Tongass’ old-growth trees, they are lost forever.
Please join your colleagues in supporting a sustainable Tongass by signing on to Representatives DeLauro and DeFazio's letter.